Neglect

It does not take outright physical violence to cause serious physical harm. Neglect can cause rapidly declining health leading to permanent damage or even death. Simple lack of supervision can lead to a fatal accident.

Neglect includes, but it not limited to failure to provide:

  • Adequate nutrition
  • Adequate hydration
  • Supervision
  • Hygiene
  • Assistance with bathroom needs
  • Clean clothing and bedding
  • Medical care
  • Medications
  • Protection from safety hazards

Residents typically do not report neglect. Some are afraid or unable. Some simply do not recognize it themselves.

Proper care in a nursing home may seem to some like excessive pampering, but it is not. Residents must have water available at all times, even if that means a staff member has to come to the room frequently to hold the glass. Residents must be supervised at all times to prevent nursing home accidents and injuries. And so much more.

   When you are choosing a nursing home for your loved one in the Chicago area, it is important for your their safety and comfort that you take your time. The Federal Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) ranks US nursing homes on a scale of one to five, with five being “much above average” and one being “much below average.” Rankings are based on factors such as reported nursing home abuse and neglect  and are available on the CMS Website

Bearing in mind that 81 Chicago area nursing homes have recently received a score of one and an additional 81 received a score of two (“below average”) visiting this site before your begin visiting nursing homes is a very good idea.

The first thing that you should look for when visiting nursing homes is at the staffing levels. It is critical that a nursing home is well staffed. This being because a vast majority of problems that can occur in a nursing home setting, including sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect and even malnourishment occur almost uniformly because of understaffing. However, if there are a sufficient number of caregivers, it becomes difficult for one to ignore or abuse abuse a resident- because others are around and actively monitoring the residents.

 


 
Another thing to be mindful when visiting a nursing home is how the staff members interact with patients. Pay close attention to how the staff speaks to and handles the patients. Are they using their names? Do the staff members seem to know the patients or, given high turnover, are they strangers? The more close interaction you are able to observe, the better sense you’ll have for what type of facility the nursing home is and whether it is one you can entrust with the care of your elderly loved one.